Paid to Live the Dream

A Seafarer's Tale of Life Afloat

Non-Fiction - Autobiography
345 Pages
Reviewed on 10/05/2018
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Author Biography

Anthony Edwards was born in Gravesend. His father had been injured in an industrial accident and once his compensation had been spent, money was tight. You had to make your own amusements. Catching eels on the marshes, riding ponies at the nearby riding school before the owners were awake and long cycle rides on an old bike which was shared with his best friend – one standing pedalling and the other sitting on the seat.
At an early age he was also fascinated by and loved watching films. They were an insight into what life could be like if you didn’t live on a council estate. However, if you wanted to go to Saturday morning cinema, the best option of amassing the necessary six pence was to have a paper round – which meant getting up at 5.0 am before going to school. Although he would amuse himself with writing and illustrating stories, Amazon had not yet been invented and the only recourse to fame and fortune, or at least the fortune, was to get a job working on the steam tugs, which he joined when he was 15. Like all new recruits he started as cook, but went onto working on deck until he left 7 years later. The hours were long – about 140 a week – but the pay was good.
Then he saw a film clip about yacht racing and concentrated on achieving the dream of sailing, which eventually led to him skippering yachts in the Med.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite

Paid to Live the Dream: A Seafarer's Tale of Life Afloat contains a series of Anthony Edwards’ fascinating accounts as he leaves his family behind for the more colorful and riveting life of a seafarer. Born in Gravesend, England, Edwards had a difficult childhood. When he stumbles upon an opportunity to leave everything behind, he takes the opportunity gladly. He starts off as a cook in a loyal and amiable crew and later becomes a skipper. More adventure is in store when he and his wife, Jill, navigate from Belgium through the French canals en route the Med on a less than perfect yacht. On the “Passing Fancy,” Edwards and Jill witness various fascinating and disturbing moments from different charters. Still, the adventure continues and soon enough they are back at sea, this time on a fancier yacht.

From the coast of England to the exotic locales of Gibraltar, Peniche, Majorca, Sorrento, and Fiumicino, Paid to Live the Dream is a mix of thrilling moments and fascinating culture. Anthony Edwards delivers the accounts through various hilarious and dangerous moments while presenting the history of different places. He talks about the people he encountered, explaining his opinion of them and theirs of him. The book also captures England’s culture during the time between 1958 and 1971. It is this wonderful blend that makes Anthony Edwards’ story not only absorbing but unforgettable. His ability to risk it all for everything he had only dreamt about is beyond inspirational. Paid to Live the Dream is definitely captivating and, on top of that, enlightening.